STILL reeling from the devastating impacts of the coronavirus crisis on hospitality, Albury-Wodonga restaurateurs today wake up to the reality of a border closure.
Wodonga-based Italy on a Plate co-owner Carmelo Cardamone said they had already had significant cancellations from Albury diners since the closure was announced on Monday.
"We've had 80 people cancel in two days because they won't be able to get across the border," he said.
"We're confident we're still going to fill our restaurant with Wodonga customers but we're disappointed for our Albury customers who will miss out on dining with us."
Victor Supper Club owner Carlos Saliba said he had no sooner reopened his Wodonga restaurant on the Lincoln Causeway than the goalposts shifted again.
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Mr Saliba said they had offered a takeaway service during the lockdown before reopening for dining recently.
"We were gearing up for the easing of restrictions in mid-June, then they were delayed until mid-July," he said.
Mr Saliba, who lives in Albury, said the border closure was impractical for the twin cities.
He said his staff lived on both sides of the border as did his customers.
"It will be really ridiculous for Albury-Wodonga to enforce; Albury-Wodonga is joined at the hip!" Mr Saliba said.
Albury-based Milkin Kitchen, which delivers chef-prepared food to mostly Victorian customers, closed its service for this week only.
It said the short notice on the border closure meant there was not enough time to gain permits.